Getting medical treatment after an accident is incredibly important. You might want to make sure that you trust the doctor that treats you, pushing you to try to get care from your family doctor or your primary care provider. However, this is not always possible or practical in an injury case.
If your injuries are too severe, you should go to the hospital instead of seeking care from your normal doctor after an injury in Tennessee. Moreover, your doctor might not accept billing from car insurance or other liability insurance – just health care insurance. This can limit which doctors you are able to see. However, you might be able to see your doctor for follow-up care after your initial emergency condition is treated.
For a free case review after an accident, call Howe Law’s Tennessee personal injury attorneys at (844) 876-4357.
Can You See Your Primary Care Doctor to Treat a Personal Injury in Tennessee?
If you were involved in an accident that is someone else’s fault, you might not be able to go to your primary care provider to get medical attention. Some of the reasons for this are practical, but others are legal reasons, usually based on how insurance billing systems work.
Injuries Are Too Severe
The most common reason that you cannot see your primary care doctor is that your injuries are simply too severe. If you faced substantial injuries, serious physical trauma, or other injuries that require a hospital setting, you should go directly to the hospital for treatment. In most cases of serious injury, you will not actually have a choice of what doctor treats you; the EMTs will have to take you to the closest hospital. You have even less choice of doctor if you are actually unconscious or unresponsive after the accident, such as after a serious car crash.
Doctors in their offices – even in many larger clinics – simply do not have the equipment, time, and facilities to treat serious injuries. While your doctor might be able to give you stitches or a splint, more serious injuries often need to be treated at a hospital.
Your primary doctor’s office will, in fact, usually tell you to hang up and go to the hospital if you call them for a medical emergency. Because of liability rules, they simply cannot accept patients for emergency treatment, and they could even be endangering their license if they tried to treat you in ill-equipped facilities instead of referring you to a hospital.
If you are not in an emergency state and you are able to call up your doctor and schedule an appointment, they might turn you away because the accident involves potential billing to liability insurance. Most doctors’ offices are equipped to handle payment with health insurance companies and to bill your insurance company for copays at your normal doctor’s visits. However, if they know that your payment might be coming from car insurance or homeowners insurance, they might not have systems in place to bill those insurance companies. Additionally, the delay between when insurance companies reimburse costs can be a lot longer for those insurance companies, and doctors’ offices might not be able to financially support that long delay in payment.
Our Nashville personal injury lawyers can often help you find a doctor who will be amenable to billing other insurance companies and can help treat you after an accident involving third-party insurance coverage.
Doctor Does Not Take Contentious Cases
Many doctors simply do not take patients for issues that have to deal with liability or injuries from an accident. The doctor’s office might ask whether the injuries that bring you in stem from an accident or injury, and they might refer you to a hospital or a different doctor if that is the case.
Can You See Your Doctor for Follow-Up Care After an Injury in Tennessee?
A lot of times, you can see your normal doctor for routine follow-up care after an injury. If you are treated by an EMT at the scene of the accident, they will usually advise you to follow up with your regular doctor in the days after the accident but that you should go to the hospital if anything gets worse. Additionally, the surgeons and specialists who treated you for your emergency situation will often include your normal doctor in your follow-up care plan, and appointments with your primary doctor might be an expected part of that treatment.
However, there might be other doctors to see in the weeks and months after your injury. Many injuries involve serious conditions that need help from specialists, and your primary care doctor might not be able to help you with these issues. For example, if you were in an accident and tore your rotator cuff or your ACL, then you might need to schedule non-emergency surgery with an orthopedic surgeon in the weeks after your accident. Similarly, if you suffered a traumatic brain injury, you might need to see a neurologist.
Follow-up care after an accident might also involve physical therapy and rehabilitation. Family medicine doctors and internists – the kinds of doctors that usually serve as primary care providers – usually do not do double duty as physical therapists and will not be able to provide this care either.
Can You See Your Doctor of Choice for a Tennessee Workplace Injury?
If you were injured at work, then you might have a list of doctors you can see. Your employer’s Workers’ Compensation insurance might specify particular doctors that you can go to for treatment for a workplace injury, and your expenses might not be covered if you see a different doctor.
If you do see your own doctor, your employer’s Workers’ Compensation insurance might refuse to pay for those expenses. However, you might be able to seek compensation for those medical bills in a lawsuit against a different at-fault party.
Call Our Tennessee Personal Injury Attorneys for Help with Your Case
Call Howe Law’s Murfreesboro personal injury attorneys for help with your injury case by dialing (844) 876-4357.